On this page you will find a collection of books that delve into the history of the day-to-day life of the people of Cockermouth. From news stories to personal recollections, there is a wealth of stories to explore and bring the past back to life. You will find more about our local history under the other headings.
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Cockermouth Comparisons Part 1 1851-1881: childhood to aged 41 years old
Cockermouth Comparisons Part 2 1851-1881:
aged 41 to 100 years old.
These two books go together. The idea is to show how much Cockermouth’s industry was changing - mainly the various Mills. Using the 1851 and the 1881 census I have shown how many people, and at what ages, were working in the mills, and the other trades in the town. Those employed in the mills decreased a lot during that thirty year period, just when the mills were going out of production. They also show how education was changing; many children would be working half a day in the mill and half a day at school if they were lucky as schooling wasn’t compulsory until about 1870. In those days most families would have had children going into service at a young age in order to supplement the home budget. (Nb - No names mentioned in these books)
£11.50 incl. postage for the two books.
Cockermouth's Carnegie Free Library -
Celebrating 100 years
In 2003 I was asked if I could look into the history of Cockermouth’s Carnegie Free Library as it was due to reach 100 years since it was opened on June 30th 1904. I have traced back to where and how the library came to be in Cockermouth, and why it was decided to take up the offer of a grant from the Carnegie Trust to build the library where it is today. It turned out to be an interesting project, looking back to staff of previous years, how they changed the way the library works and many subjects connected to the building. Lets hope that the building is still around in another 100 years. During the WW2 parts of the building was used for teaching our children, so much information was learned during the writing of the book.
£6.75 incl. all charges
The Knacker Trade in Cockermouth -
A lot of the research for this book was carried out by Pat Martin, a member of the Fletcher family that ran the Knacker’s Yard for about 100 years. Castle Tannery was situated next to the Jennings Brewery, near the confluence of the rivers Cocker and Derwent in Brewery Lane. Fletcher’s Knacker Shop was also situated in Waste Lane, beside Bitter Beck. Behind the premises and up “The Garden”, was the building, which is now in private ownership, in St. Helens Street, this was the family home. Isaac Fletcher was the last member of the family to live there. The shop itself was in a dilapidated building that was maintained in a functional rather than decorative manner. This book includes old family photos and stories of yesteryear. How things have changed now!!!